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Coding Gifts Kids & Teens Would Love To Receive | Adults are walking around in a very odd situation when the time comes for kids and coding gifts. If you have never coded in your life, you are spoiled for choice on what to get your kids, but you have no idea if it is something they will love (it would be like asking a fishmonger to pick the best alloys for building bridges).
On the other hand, if you are a coder, you had a “Very” different experience and introduction to coding than your kids have. You come from an era where you had to often pay for information on how to learn, and from an era when something as simple as installing a code editor could turn into a mini nightmare. You too are in a tough spot when it comes to picking coding gifts. Still, to keep things safe, here are a broad section of ideas to get you started.
Buying a computer may seem like a bit of a big investment considering that your child hardly knows how to code but consider how easy it is for coders to completely mess up a computer and have to wipe it. Also, considered the fact that there are 3yr old second-hand computers that cost a tiny fraction of what this year’s computers cost.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money. Simply buy your kid a coding computer that is used just for coding. It gives your kid plenty of room for error, especially if they start downloading software that people online have told them is good for coding, only to find out it is malware. Buying a secondhand computer gives your kid a risk-free area to experiment with coding.
A Light Up Mechanical Keyboard
Even as an adult, the light-up computer keyboard still looks cool when you are in your bedroom or office in the dark. Plus, no matter the age of your kid, buy them a good mechanical keyboard. Not only does it sound great, but it is far better for your kid’s fingers. The activation points are keener, and the sound helps to stop excited kids from fingering the keys too hard and causing damage to themselves. Also, consider a light-up mouse or a gaming mouse. They are a little more expensive but are helpful to people which spend a lot of time on their computers.
An Age-Appropriate Learning Course
One of the better coding gifts for kids is a learning course that is both age-appropriate and uses gamification. Elon Musk said, quite sincerely, that the best way to teach children is to turn things into games. Learning courses that also contain games are pretty good for helping your child understand coding and helping your older child remember some of the core concepts.
These are toys that you buy pre-made, or you have to build them, and you program them with your phone and get them to move around as per your coded instructions. Honestly, they are on this list because there are so many of them on the market, but beware that around 95% of them are garbage. They are buggy, cheap, and most go unsupported within six months. Plus, they fill your phone with shovelware or bloatware and nobody walks away happy. Plus, younger children will not see the link between this toy and computer coding.
Still, if you are lucky, you may find the sort of toys they use in Universities for children’s open days. Those really cool ones that both “Work” and are not flimsy toys. Sadly, it is your responsibility to wade through the epic amount of garbage, most of which is on Amazon, to find that one good toy that works, that is programmable, and that actually engages your child in the fanciful-but-dry world of programming.
Apps That You Check Yourself
There are lots of apps out there for young coders. The problem they have is the same as you have with robot toys. There is just so much garbage out there that it is difficult to find a good one. Nevertheless, you can vet out quite a few yourself to help avoid the ones with predatory advertising or unfair permissions. The great thing about coding apps is that you can often find something that is suited to your kid’s temperament or interests because there is a fair amount of variety out there.